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2014/2015  BA-BSACO1009U  Strategy in a Service Perspective: Arts and Culture

English Title
Strategy in a Service Perspective: Arts and Culture

Course information

Language English
Course ECTS 7.5 ECTS
Type Mandatory
Level Bachelor
Duration One Quarter
Course period Second Quarter
Timetable Course schedule will be posted at calendar.cbs.dk
Study board
Study Board for BSc in Service Management
Course coordinator
  • Mia Reinholt - Department of Strategic Management and Globalization (SMG)
Main academic disciplines
  • Corporate and Business Strategy
Last updated on 15-08-2014
Learning objectives
At the end of this course, students should:
  • Understand the particular strategic challenges associated with service firms.
  • Understand the key issues of strategic management: Value creation, value appropriation, superior positioning, and (sustained) competitive advantage.
  • Be cognizant with the fundamental theorizing in the strategic management field.
  • Be able to explain and discuss the strategic management theories and models introduced in the course.
  • Be able to explain and discuss the links between the different theories and models introduced in the course.
  • Be able to identify and apply relevant strategic management theories and models to analyze practical situations and issues related to firms’ strategy.
  • Understand how various functional areas fit together and influence the performance of the firm, which provides an important way in which this course serves an integrative purpose relative to the other courses in this program.
Course prerequisites
Students not enrolled in BSc in Business Administration & Service Management must document A level in English equal to TOEFL 575 and A level in mathematics equal to Danish level B.
Strategy in a Service Perspective: Arts and Culture:
Exam ECTS 7,5
Examination form Oral exam based on written product

In order to participate in the oral exam, the written product must be handed in before the oral exam; by the set deadline. The grade is based on an overall assessment of the written product and the individual oral performance.
Individual or group exam Group exam, max. 3 students in the group
Size of written product Max. 5 pages
Assignment type Synopsis
Written product to be submitted on specified date and time.
20 min. per student, including examiners' discussion of grade, and informing plus explaining the grade
Grading scale 7-step scale
Examiner(s) Internal examiner and external examiner
Exam period Autumn Term
Make-up exam/re-exam
Same examination form as the ordinary exam
Make-up examinations are given as an individual oral exam based on a synopsis - exactly as for the regular exam. The synopsis should be handed in before the set deadline for make-up exams. In case the student already handed in a synopsis for the regular exam (and met the set deadline), but was sick on the date of the oral exam, the make-up exam is given as an individual oral exam based on the synopsis handed in for the regular exam.

Re-take examinations are given as an individual oral exam based on an improved version of the synopsis handed in for the regular exam. The improved version of the synopsis should be handed in before the set deadline for re-takes.
Description of the exam procedure
The synopsis will be followed by an individual, 20 minutes oral exam. While it takes its point of departure in the synopsis, it is a curriculum exam meaning that links are drawn to other parts of the curriculum. The individual assessment is based on a combined evaluation of the written product and the individual oral exam.
Course content and structure

The course provides an introduction to core thinking on strategic management, that is, how firms seek to achieve and sustain competitive advantage. Thus, the course provides students with a general understanding of the issues, considerations, analyses, and decision-making situations that confront general managers in a strategic perspective. Strategic decision-making is concerned with the long-term performance of the firm, the size and scope of its business activities, the market position of the firm, the resources needed to perform diverse corporate functions, etc. Moreover, management must consider how to coordinate and utilize the specialized departmental functions in the organization to achieve superior performance on a consistent basis.

To achieve these aims, the course introduces both classical and new theories and models within the area of Strategic Management that can be used by the students to address some of the fundamental strategic issues confronting the firm: Is the firm well positioned in an industry? What are the key resources on the basis of which the firm competes? How can the firm ensure its resource base in the future? How can the firm increase the creation and appropriation of value? How does the firm ensure an effective implementation of its strategy? What are the specific strategic challenges of service industries and firms—and how can we handle these? 

Teaching methods
The course structure: The course is built around a standard textbook (see curriculum below), which introduces the basic strategy concepts, and a number of research articles and cases.

The course starts by introducing some basic terms like mission, vision, goals, and strategy and looks at different ways in which strategies are developed in theory and in practice. Next follows an introduction of how we can analyze the environment of the firm and the internal resources, capabilities, and processes of the firm. On the basis of these analytical models for strategy development, we assess the role of corporate headquarters, alternative ways of competing, and innovative methods of strategic renewal and growth. This is followed by a discussion of how different types of strategies can be synthesized, and how we can evaluate and chose among them.

Throughout the course, the theoretical models and insights are applied to service firms and industries, and we consider the particular challenges raised by services. How does it matter that service-industries are heavily human capital-intensive? What are the sources of competitive advantage in service industries? What role does reputation play? And so on.

Teaching is lecture-based, however, supplemented with discussions, group presentations, and case discussions. The lectures will be accompanied by line-specific workshops where the students get the opportunity to work with the introduced theories and models in a line-focused and practice-oriented way.
Student workload
Classes 30 hours
Workshops 8 hours
Preparation for classes and workshops (incl exam) 168 hours
Expected literature
  • Grant, R. 2010: Contemporary Strategy Analysis, Text and Cases, 8th edition, Wiley
Research articles:
  • Mintzberg, H. & Waters, J. A. 1985. Of strategies, deliberate and emergent. Strategic Management Journal, 6: 257-272.
  • Peteraf, M. & Barney, J. (2003). Unraveling the resource-based tangle. Managerial Decision Economics, 24: 309-323.
  • Segal-Horn, S. 2006. Strategy in Service Organizations, in Andrew Campbell and Faulkner David O. (eds.) Oxford Handbook of Strategy.
  • Porter, M. 2008. The Five Competitive Forces That Shape Strategy. Harvard Business Review.
  • Brandenburger, A. M. & Nalebuff, B. J. 1995. The right game: Use game theory to shape strategy. Harvard Business Review, July-August: 57-71.
  • Barney, J. B. (1991). Firm resources and sustained competitive advantage. Journal of Management, 17: 99-120.
  • Teece, D., Pisano, G., & Shuen, A. 1997. Dynamic Capabilities and Strategic Management. Strategic Management Journal, 18: 509-533.
  • Segal-Horn, S. 2000. The search for core competencies in a service multinational: A case study of the French hotel Novotel. Globalization of Services.
  • Martin, R. L. 2010. The Execution Trap. Harvard Business Review.
  • Sull, D. & Eisenhardt, K. M. 2012. Simple Rules for a Complex World. Harvard Business Review.
  • Frei, F. 2008. The Four Things a Service Business Must Get Right. Harvard Business Review.
  • Ryan, R. M. & Deci, E. L. 2000. Self-determination Theory and the Facilitation of Intrinsic Motivation, Social Development, and Well-being. American Psychologist.
  • Heracleous, L. & Wirtz, J. 2010. Singapore Airlines’ Balancing Act. Harvard Business Review.
  • Lovelock, C. & Yip, G. 1996. Developing Global Strategies for Service Businesses. California Management Review.
  • Westney, D. E., Zaheer, S. 2001. The Multinational Enterprise as an Organization’, in Alan M. Rugman and Thomas L. Brewer (eds.) The Oxford Handbook of International Business.
  • Porter, M. & Kramer, M. 2002. The Competitive Advantage of Corporate Philanthropy: Competitive Context. Harvard Business Review, 80 (12): 56-68.
  • Devinney, T. 2009. Is the socially responsible corporation a myth? The good, the bad, and the ugly of corporate social responsibility. The Academy of Management Perspectives, 23 (2): 44-56.

  • Mostly available in the textbook.

Please note, changes may occur. The professor will upload the final reading list on LEARN two weeks before the course starts.

Last updated on 15-08-2014